The Capelinhos Volcano

60 Years 

On September 27th, 1957, the eruption of the Capelinhos volcano began. 

Capelinhos Volcano

The Volcano

The landscape of the western tip of Faial Island was marked by the magnificent building of the Capelinhos Lighthouse and by the hustle and bustle of rural life. On one side, the cultivation of the fields, and on the other, the importance of the ocean, not only for fishing, but also for whaling. In the mid-18th century, whaling was introduced to the islands by American whalers and became an important source of income for the Azores. During the 19th century, the island of Faial experienced a substantial cultural, social and economic stimulus with the arrival of the Dabney family. This American family held the role of consular representation of the United States to the Azores for many years, and distinguished themselves with their contribution to the whaling industry and the production and export of oranges.   

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The Eruption

In the registry book of the Capelinhos Lighthouse, where the notes of the dedicated lighthouse keeper Tomás Pacheco da Rosa are found, it can be read that on September 24th of 1957, two earthquakes were registered, and three more the following morning. On September 25th, the quakes became more frequent, although their intensity never surpassed intensity III of the Mercalli scale, and on the following day, more than 40 events were registered. Between the early afternoon of that day until 5h45 of September 27th, a constant tremor was felt. Then the quakes began to diminish. About one hour later, at 6h45 in the morning, the first signs of a new volcano began to emerge from the ocean.

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60 Years of History


See here the commemorative programme of the Capelinhos Volcano 60th anniversary


Find out about upcoming events​ here


The Capelinhos Volcano 60th anniversary Executive Committee emerges…
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The Exhibition

Explore the 60th Anniversary of the Capelinhos Volcano here

Faial Natural Park
Capelinhos Volcano Interpretation Centre

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